Editor’s note: You can read the full “celebration” issue here. It also includes stories from Edible Manhattan, Edible Long Island and Edible East End. Use this map to find a hard copy near you, or better yet, subscribe here.
“True hospitality extends to others and to yourself. Too often we forget about the latter,” chef Anita Lo writes in her latest cookbook, Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One. And as I draft this letter in the eleventh hour before our simultaneous issue deadline, largest annual event and podcast launch (!)—all in one weekend—I can relate.
We’ve all got our own Bermuda Triangle–like periods, though, and in the sage words of my icon RuPaul, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?” That’s as good of a reason as any to step away and still cook myself dinner tonight.
I can’t think of a better writer than Julia Bainbridge to capture this thoroughly modern sentiment while writing about Lo’s new book for this issue. A James Beard–nominated journalist and host of The Lonely Hour podcast, Bainbridge regularly reminds listeners that there can be joy in solitude, which can be especially important to hear around the holidays. And as Lo shows with her simple clam recipe, taking care of ourselves can be delicious if we allow it to be, too.
About extending that hospitality to others, we have a couple of recipes to inspire you. Caroline Lange takes oat milk out of the coffee shop and into the kitchen with her vegan oatmeal cream pies, and my partner, Tommy Werner, details not only how to create your own, highly giftable vermouth and Campari but how to combine them to make a homemade negroni, too.
We also spotlight organizations fundamentally designed with others in mind, whether or not it’s “the season.” Our digital strategy editor Bridget Shirvell gives due recognition to God’s Love We Deliver for their pioneering food-as-medicine work, and Lisa Held details how Rethink Food NYC reimagines restaurant scraps to prepare high-quality dishes for food-insecure New Yorkers.
Owning our “celebrations” theme, Alicia Kennedy also paints a warm portrait of Williamsburg’s Fortunato Brothers and their long tradition of crafting Feast of the Seven Fishes marzipan by hand. Then in East Harlem, Suzanne Zuppello shares how, even as they grow, Hot Bread Kitchen sticks to their simple, classic three-ingredient tortillas that, according to the Pueblan woman who makes them, are excellent for tostadas and flautas this time of year.
I’ll let you read these wonderful stories for yourself, though. It’s time for me to make dinner.
Ariel Lauren Wilson
P.S. We now have a podcast! It’s called In the Field and you can find it wherever you listen. Learn more about our first at ediblebrooklyn.com/podcast.